Update: Kids’ Shared Bedroom

Hey, yall! I hope your summers are going well. We have been doing the usual… popsicles and sticky faces, swimming pools, sunscreen, beach trips, late bedtimes, vegetable gardens, and growing Baby #3!

July 4, 2019

Part of getting ready for our newest addition – Anna James – was moving Natalie out of the nursery. We weren’t willing to give up the guest room (love having family and friends stay with us comfortably!), so we made the decision to put the big kids in a shared room with a bunk bed. After replacing all of the carpet upstairs, we finished their room and officially made the switch about 7 weeks ago. Nothing happens without an adjustment period, but overall it has been fantastic. Scroll down to see my design and thoughts about making a shared, gender-neutral room work!

Henry Bunkbed by Viv+Rae; purchased during the Wayfair WayDay sale in April.

I didn’t want to “divide” the room between a boy and girl theme. I also *really* resisted my normal urge to make everything neutral. When the kids got excited about the colorful giraffe print at Home Goods one afternoon, I knew I had a starting place. From there, I put it together piece by piece!

Custom 3D wall art by GrammaInTheBox (Etsy)

If you’ve followed my blog for long you know that clutter makes me cra-zay. When putting this room together, I really tried to focus on “big impact with little real estate” as well as kid-friendly elements to make clean-up a breeze.

One of the best purchases I made was this Beddy’s bedding for their bunk beds. I knew that layers of pretty comforters and blankets would inevitably end up in heaps on the end of their beds, never to be made after blog pictures were taken 🙂 With Beddy’s bunkbed sets, the kids can “unzip” their lined sheets – which are the softest minky material! – and easily remake them in the mornings.

We have had a few “accidents”, and I’ve been pleased with how easy it is to launder these as well. At this point in our game, I would definitely recommend Beddy’s if you are looking for a tidy solution. The sets are not inexpensive, but they have been worth the money in my opinion.

The Henry bunkbed by Viv+Rae has storage drawers underneath for toys, and I added the SKUBB storage boxes from Ikea to provide some extra structure for that big space. These boxes also work well to organize drawer space in the Ikea Hemnes dresser we bought!

The kids have a “station” for pajamas, pull-ups, wipes, and diapers tucked behind their bunkbed. It’s not cluttered or readily visible from the door, but it’s easy for them to access and take ownership of their items.

A few other “small real estate, big impact” design elements you may have missed in the pictures:

  • Triangle Wall Decals (Amazon)
  • Creative QT Stuffed Animal Storage Bean Bag Chairs (Amazon) – a great way to organize all of those random stuffed animals! The kids sit on these to read and play and wrestle, but the big zippers are easy for little hands to open and fish out their stuffies (and put them back in!)
  • Dresser knobs (Amazon)
  • LittleHippo “OK to Wake” alarm clock and sound machine (Amazon) – This may be my favorite thing in the whole room. The clock feature uses a series of lights to let the kids know when it’s okay to get out of bed! My kids caught on very quickly with the routine we set… at 7am, the light turns yellow and they know it will be okay to get out of bed “soon”. At 7:30 when the light turns green, they are allowed out of bed. I can’t tell you how peaceful my morning coffee times has been over the past two months!!!
  • *I toyed with the idea of an area rug for some more color, but ultimately decided it wasn’t a must-have. (New carpet + the bunkbed drawers to navigate)

The kids have loved their room, and I can’t tell you how much joy I have gotten from watching them share and become better friends. It was so much fun to have a “room reveal” for them when it was finally put together… every squeal and giggle and “LOOK at this!” made the process worth it.

Anna James’ nursery is almost finished, and I will be sharing her very sweet, watercolor-ed space soon! My C-section is currently scheduled for September 4th, and things seem to be going according to plan. Until then, we are soaking up every minute of these big kids I love so much!

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